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How to Convert Liquid Measurements

By Edited Dec 30, 2013 0 2

As a favorite hobby and pastime to many, whether one is cooking or baking, learning how to convert liquid measurements may become a skill in accuracy and precision that takes a back seat to the simple ease of simply judging ingredient measurements by sight. In all their cooking and baking experience and expertise, some may be completely comfortable with their uncanny ability of measuring by sight that you can always count on them to produce a final product that is up to the standards of even the harshest food critics. Unfortunately, others fail miserably, while leading to a family member who, after tasting, makes a snide or rude comment.

Cooking and Baking affords people with the opportunity to create some that can be enjoyed by many, and, if the precision of your ingredient measurements of your final product is off, so will be its taste, as well as, the pleasure and enjoyment that it was meant to instill in those you cooked or baked for. In this Info Barrel article, you will see that liquid measurements can be converted essentially in three different ways: One can convert measurements within the U.S. Measurement System, within the Metric System, and actually between both the U.S. and Metric System. Learning to master how to do these conversions now can manifest into a better cooking and baking product for both you and your family.

Things You Will Need

  • Measuring cups
  • Calculator
  • Measuring spoons
  • Paper
  • Pen or pencil
  • Step 1

    While it is very tempting for one to begin converting liquid measurements right away, it is first important for one to understand the historical context, and standards behind measuring. It was the evolution of man, throughout history, that essentially required the emergence of techniques and scales for measurements first out of convenience and then out of absolute necessity. Whether we are constructing a house, doing a science experiment in a lab somewhere, or cooking and baking, these systems of measurements are extremely important for us to accurately and precisely reduce the uncertainty in what we are actually measuring.

    Step 2

    Within the U.S. System of measurement, there are several measurements that escalate in quantity held. Among these measurements are:
    • the Teaspoon
    • the Tablespoon
    • Fluid Ounces
    • the Cup
    • the Pint
    • the Quart
    • the Gallon
    • the Barrel
    • the Hogshead
    While the Metric system is beginning to gain a foothold as a standard of measurement around the world, the United States' has primarily stayed true to using the U.S. system of measurement. Whether you are cooking or baking, you may find that alot of your recipes include the requirement for measurements and conversions that occur within the U.S. System of measurement rather than the Metric System.

    Step 3

    With the previous measurements in mind, each has a certain conversion required that will be required in order to convert a smaller measurement (such as 'the Teaspoon') to a larger measurement (such as 'the Tablespoon'). In this case, if you don't have a tablespoon, yet you have a teaspoon, you can actually use three teaspoons in order to achieve the measurement required of a tablespoon. Essentially, each unit of measurement, when multiple are used, will eventually equate to a higher unit of measurement.

    For example:

  • Three teaspoons equals 1 tablespoon.
  • Four tablespoons equals 1/4 cup or 2 fluid ounces
  • Eight fluid ounces equals 1 cup.
  • Two cups equals 1 pint.
  • Two pints equals 1 quart or 32 fluid ounces.
  • Four quarts equals 1 gallon or 128 fluid ounces.
  • Three and one-half gallons equals 1 barrel.
  • Two barrels equals 1 hogshead.
  • Step 4

    When converting measurements within the Metric system, you will use:
    • Ten milliliters equals 1 centiliter.
    • Ten centiliters equals 1 deciliter.
    • Ten deciliters (or 1,000 ml) equals 1 liter.
    • Ten liters equals 1 decaliter.
    • Ten decaliters equals 1 hectoliter.
    • Ten hectoliters equals 1 kiloliter.

    Step 5

    When converting measurements between the U.S. and Metric systems of measurements, you will use:
    • One teaspoon equals about 5 milliliters.
    • One tablespoon equals about 15 milliliters.
    • One fluid ounce equals about 30 milliliters (29.573 ml).
    • One cup equals about 240 milliliters (236.584 ml).
    • One quart equals about 1 liter (0.94635 L).
    • One gallon equals about 4 liters (3.7854 L).

    While potentially intimidating at first, it is easy to see that various systems of measurement exist so that we can ultimately be more accurate in the activities we do in life. Rather than succumbing to horribly cooked or baked food as the result of measuring strictly by sight, one can greatly increase the likelihood of creating an outstanding final product that is enjoyed by all simply by take a bit of time extra to really measure their ingredients. Doing this will be reflected in the quality of the food you produce, and, no doubt, will be cherished by appreciative guests and family members.

    Tips & Warnings

    As you begin to convert your measurements, within each measurement system, you may find one that you are particularly more comfortable with. Such is the case with the Metric system, however, it is important to take notice of what measurements and measurement system is being used within the recipe that you are trying to create.

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    Comments

    Jul 20, 2010 6:07pm
    Lynsuz
    Very nicely done.
    Jul 20, 2010 10:07pm
    Sookie
    I remember having to change to the metric in the 70's, (Canada) once you got the hang of it, it was OK, although I still check tables for conversions! Great article!
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